So, I went to Toys R Us. That in and of itself is pretty bad news. Toys R Us is one of those places that sends me into the kind of sensory overload that makes me want to run, whimpering, back into the natural light just to get away, far, far, away from the flourescent bulbs and relentlessly cheerful merchandise. I think the store environment must have the same effect on the staff because the people who work there look like Zombies From The Island of Misfit Toys, not like people whose job it is to bring retail joy to children everywhere.
Anyway. I just wanted one thing: a floor mat that looked like roads to put in the playroom for C. I found one. It looked perfect. Until I read this:
It’s kind of hard to read but it’s a LEAD WARNING!!!!! Ladies and…well, more ladies, haven’t we gone past the point of LEAD IN TOYS? Really? Perhaps this was manufactured by a company that uses a labor force made up entirely of kids whose development was stunted by lead in their bloodstream and they’re trying to self-perpetuate? I wish I had a good answer for that. But I just don’t.
But the Lead Mat wasn’t the only gem I saw in Toys R Us. Check this out:
This appears to be some sort of playset called Punjabi Prison Match. I’m not sure what’s more alarming about this: the implicit approval of violence as a form of entertainment or the culturally insensitive name of the toy.
But that’s not all! Perhaps after instilling a love of violence and disdain for foreign cultures in you child, you can purchase this:
Yes, a child-sized Escalade so we can foster in our kids the kind of bloated sense of entitlement that led to recession–backed, spending sprees.
If you’re worried about your kid getting lazy from rollin’ gangsta in their Caddy and want them to get some exercise, we have these little gems from the section I like to call the Human Hamster Ball Shop:
Because what says fun like rolling around the yard in an inflatable ball so you can crack skulls with three or four of your closets friends?
What really worries me is that somewhere, there is a family who has the Human Hamster Balls and a giant trampoline in their yard. And they’re behind on their insurance payments.
Now, if all of that doesn’t give you nightmares, how about this:
A Thomas bed that will either delight children or scare the shit out of them. Also? It was suspended about six feet above the floor on a slanted display rack so it looked like it was about to drive right over me!
And after the character-branded merchandise atrophies your child’s imagination and leaves them unable to make up their own stories, there’s this:
Because apparently, the chairs and blankets we used to make forts when we were kids required too much inventiveness.
And finally there’s this:
A REMOTE CONTROL SKUNK!!!!!!!!
Seriously. That’s just wrong.
The whole excursion makes me want to learn to whittle little handmade toys for C but I know I’ll be back there someday. But not for the remote control skunk. Because that’s fucked up.